By Alisa Cliff
In the age of technology, it’s no surprise that 54% of social media browsers are using social media to research products and brands. Managing Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube (the list goes on), can be cumbersome. Using a tool to manage your engagement, and perhaps include those engagements in part of a marketing campaign, can be the difference between one-time donors and lifelong advocates.
Salesforce Marketing Cloud Social Studio
Salesforce Marketing Cloud Social Studio offers a suite of tools that can be used to manage engagement and listening across a wide range of social networks. Social Studio is made up of three key components:
- Publish: for scheduling, approvals, and posting to social networks
- Engage: for monitoring your own social accounts and listening for keywords in broader social accounts (called Topic Profiles) and then acting on these posts
- Analyze: for monitoring social discussions and creating dashboards that report on both your own and outside social activity
Social Studio on the web can also be configured for Social Customer Service, allowing marketers to push social posts to a connected Service Cloud for case management.
The core of Marketing Cloud’s Social Studio Publish, Engage and Analyze functionalities are present within the Social Studio Mobile app (at version 1.28.0 at the time of writing), providing a potentially great tool for the social marketer on the go. Available for free on both iOS and Android devices, it is worth noting that the iOS version features slightly more functionality than its Android counterpart and subsequently provided the basis for this review.
Launch and Overview
Users can access any workspace they have permissions for right from the app. Upon launch, the app will open directly to the publish page of the user’s last accessed workspace. However, there are no indicators on what workspace is open, so if a user has access to multiple workspaces it may be necessary to access the app’s main menu in order to identify or switch workspaces. It is possible to create and delete workspaces from the app as well as assign social accounts (iOS only) and topic profiles to the workspace at the time of creation. Workspace members must be added and removed in Social Studio web. In the iOS app, workspace name, descriptions, and images can be updated.
For those iOS users with an iPhone 6 or higher, additional Apple 3D touch capabilities allow quick one-touch access to open the publish calendar (although this is the default behavior of the app anyway) and to post to Twitter or Facebook. This feature is of minimal value but represents a welcomed addition further bolstering the superior functionality of the app on iOS.
Additionally, the iOS app offers slightly broader support for publishing across networks (including LinkedIn and YouTube). Both iOS and Android give Engage and Analyze availability across all networks, except Pinterest.
As noted previously, the publish calendar is displayed upon login to a workspace. Currently, it is only possible to view posts for one day at a time. Posting can be done to any connected social account with the same image insertion, link shortening, and labeling functionality Social Studio web users will be accustomed to. Posts can be saved in draft, edited, or published right from the interface.
Accounts that have approvals enabled for social posting can have authorized approvers view their approval tasks and act as needed. Push notification functionality within the app alerts users once posts are assigned to them, but it is not currently possible to initiate or create an approval rule from within the app itself.
The publish section of the Social Studio app also offers a nice interface to view post details (such as author, date, and any other associated attributes) and post-performance, including click engagement and feedback.
Users can view engagement data on tabs and columns that match their setup in Social Studio web (iOS only), or create new tab/column configurations directly from the app. While new Topic Profiles cannot be created from within the app, any existing Topic Profile accessible to a user and workspace can be viewed or added in Engage.
When viewing posts in columns, the same information users see in Engage web is available including the full content of the post, sentiment, assignment, labels, and notes. Users can take action on posts either from their own social account(s) or a Topic Profile in the app, just as they would in the web version, with the ability to like (Twitter or Facebook), respond, assign, or classify (with flags for status, sentiment, assignment, etc.) as needed. iOS also offers quick actions from the Engage view of a post to allow a quick hide, response, or sentiment update.
Users who employ macros in Social Studio web will find that they can apply existing macros from within the iOS app, which could be very useful, especially for individuals employing social customer service. New macros cannot be created in the app at this time.
The Analyze area of the Social Studio app is currently the most limited area of the app with little more than viewability for existing dashboards. This area has the potential to be quite helpful with further updates, especially for individuals who have established dashboards they wish to monitor on the go. Mobile, unfortunately, does not allow for the sharing or editing of dashboards and in-depth analysis, so these functionalities would need to be saved for the user’s next Social Studio web session.
The social marketer who is managing several accounts and monitoring Topic Profiles can take quick action to classify, respond, and escalate social interaction from a centralized location, which could provide a great deal of value in managing workflow. However, while the Social Studio mobile app has some useful functionality, it’s not at full parity with the web version of Social Studio and likely would provide the most utility to users who already have a well-established Social Studio web configuration. It’s certainly worth a download (iOS and Android) for the Social Studio web user, provided said users understand the current functionality limitations sacrificed in the name of mobile accessibility.